Despite the somewhat enigmatic appearance of its icon,
the function The Debug Server is actually very straightforward:
- When an application crashes, it allows the user of an application to gather more information
about the nature of the crash, and then to fully quit out of it.
- Not surprisingly, this makes it a helpful diagnostic tool for developers.
Let's say you're using your favorite -- but slightly buggy -- BeOS
application, "BeFlakey." When things take a turn for the worst and BeFlakey
inevitably crashes, the Kernel makes a call to the Debug Server, which, then in turn
pops up the familiar crash dialog box:
has encountered an error which prevents
it from continuing. The BeOS will terminate
the application and clean up.
The dialog box presents you with the option either to gather more details or, by
hitting the "OK" button, to permit the BeOS to gracefully quit the troublesome
Since you are a big BeFlakey fan, you're likely to opt for more details, in which
case you are presented with an additional dialog box with some information about the
nature of the crash. From here you can scribble down the
information that the Debug Server gives you and email it to
BeFlakey's author, go directly into the Debugger yourself, or let the BeOS quit the application.
The Debug Server also serves as a diagnostic tool for developers. When writing
an application, a programmer can insert a command at any point in the code that will
force the Debugger to come up and examine specified variables. In this way they can
determine if variables are being passed correctly, and if they're not, where in the code
things are breaking down. Slightly more elevated than